Tokyo Grand Tea Ceremony
The 2nd annual Tokyo Grand Tea Ceremony was held in two locations in Tokyo to share the ancient Japanese tea culture with the citizens of Tokyo as well as with visitors to the metropolis.
The first event was held at the Edo-Tokyo Open Air Architectural Museum on October 10-11 followed by a similar event at the Hama Rikyu Gardens (which we attended) on October 17-18. 2009. Both venues are of great historical importance to Tokyo and are well-known for their serene scenic beauty (Note: Future blog post about the Hama Rikyu Gardens).
The Tokyo Grand Tea Ceremony provides participants with the opportunity to casually participate in a cha-kai (tea ceremony). Participants can choose to take part in a chaseki indoor tea ceremony or nodate outdoors Tea Ceremony under the autumn sky (referred to as a nodate tea ceremony).
The event also featured on-stage performances of traditional Japanese music and dances by geisha. There was a koto and shimisen performance …
… followed by several dances performed by four very elegant geishas wearing lovely autumn kimonos.
A special short course about tea ceremony was also held on stage by an American tea master, who has been living in Japan for about 8 years and spoke in both Japanese and English.
We attended the special nodate outdoor tea ceremony for visitors and foreigners held in English.
Before drinking the tea, you should eat a sweet (in our case, a halloween treat) to balance the bitter matcha tea.
It was a wonderful way to enjoy a perfect autumn day of Japanese tea ceremony, surrounded by nature in the middle of Tokyo.